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InfoQ Homepage News Meteor Release Galaxy, a Hosting Environment for Meteor Apps

Meteor Release Galaxy, a Hosting Environment for Meteor Apps

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Meteor has released Galaxy, its long-anticipated cloud service for managing Meteor applications.

In the blog post Announcing Meteor Galaxy, Matt DeBergalis, founder of Meteor, says with Galaxy users "deploy Meteor apps with the same meteor deploy command you're already used to" and that Galaxy comes with the "day-to-day basics" including application logs and SSL cert management.

In the blog post Meteor and a Galaxy of containers with Kubernetes from May 2015, Meteor developer Justin Santa Barbara described how Galaxy was originally built on top of Kubernetes, an open source project led by Google.

Santa Barbara says "Kubernetes manages the basic resources of computing - compute, networking and storage - and makes sure that your containers reliably get their fair share of each, and stay running even as the underlying systems may fail. Most of all, it lets us think in terms of multiple containers which run a service."

Built on top of Docker containers, Galaxy was launched on AWS EC2 instances.

In the presentation Building Next-Generation Applications with Amazon ECS delivered at AWS re:Invent 2015 DeBergalis said that integrating Galaxy with other parts of the AWS stack saved the team time and code, with the bottom line being ECS got Galaxy to market faster.

DeBergalis says "Every application in Galaxy runs in one on more of these containers. Galaxy monitors these containers, replaces them if they fail, and collects the key system performance metrics for each container."

This is illustrated below.

Galaxy Containers

Galaxy also brings a dedication to connected client tracking, with a real time chart of how many devices are connected to your Meteor app and system-level container metrics tracking the CPU and memory usage of each application container.

Pricing plans for Galaxy have prompted some surprise and debate in the community since they were announced.

Andrei Polmera, co-founder of the Sync Ninja platform, wrote in the blog post Meteor dropped the ball with Galaxy, "Meteor's Galaxy comes in 3 packages (Team, Business and Enterprise, which is a catch-all package for larger organizations) starting at $495/month when billed annually or $650/month billed monthly. That's a lot. A $5,940/year package is not a 'Team' package."

On Hacker News, the discussion around Galaxy's release also quickly turned to pricing. With some users expressing disappointment, user xbyranx commented "It looks like they are purposefully ceding the small-fry market to Modulus and maybe even Digital Ocean. Part of what you're buying here is access to the Meteor team and best practices at scale. From what I've heard that's something it's harder to get from Modulus."

DeBergalis specifically addresses the question of a free option in the original blog post, saying Meteor have always offered free hosting to every Meteor developer through meteor deploy and that now the team have "had a chance to shake out key parts of Galaxy's technology stack with large production apps," they will be transitioning the service to Galaxy. The project's FAQ promise a free Galaxy plan is coming.

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